Outcomes of Geriatric Hip Fractures in a Tertiary Referral Center in Malaysia During the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Publication date: Jun 01, 2023

Introduction With the advancing age of the population, there are an increasing number of patients with geriatric hip fractures. Despite the advancement of surgical knowledge and improvement of implant designs to treat geriatric hip fractures, mortality and morbidity remain high among these frail patients. In conjunction with the COVID-19 pandemic, the collateral damage dealt to these patients remains unknown as scarce resources are funneled to deal with the pandemic. This study is geared to investigate the surgical outcomes of patients with geriatric hip fractures who were admitted during the initial phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods This retrospective study was carried out at Hospital Kuala Lumpur, the largest public hospital in the capital of Malaysia, from March 1, 2020, to March 1, 2021. All patients of age 60 years and above were screened for suitability. Only patients who had undergone surgical intervention during the study period were included in this study. Patients’ demographic data, mechanism of injury, waiting time for surgery, type of surgery, complications and ambulatory status were obtained from the medical records. Univariate analysis was performed to determine the factors associated with complications as well as the post-operative ambulatory status of the patients. Results A total of 52 patients were included in this study, with a median age of 72 years. The majority of the patients were Chinese (n=21, 40. 4%). This was followed by Malay and Indian (n=14, 26. 9% each) and other ethnicity (n=3, 5. 8%). More than three-quarters of the patients had a trivial injury such as a fall due to a miss-step (n=16, 30. 8%) and slip (n=16, 30. 8%) and a fall due to dizziness (n=8, 15. 4%). Only 12 patients (23. 1%) sustained hip fractures due to trauma. The median time to surgery for these patients was 5 days (interquartile range: 4 days). Most of these patients underwent total hip replacement (n=30, 57. 7%). This was followed by unipolar hemiarthroplasty (n=11, 21. 2%), bipolar hemiarthroplasty (n=10, 19. 2%) and internal fixation (n=1, 1. 9%). Among these patients, six of them had documented complications. There were periprosthetic joint infection (n=2, 3. 8%), dislocation (n=2, 3. 8%), hematoma formation (n=1, 1. 9%) and seroma (n=1, 1. 9%). Six months after the surgery, most of the patients were able to ambulate, albeit some patients required walking aid such as walking stick and walking frame. Univariate analysis showed that all the factors were not associated with the complications and the post-operative ambulatory status of the patients. Conclusion The incidence of geriatric hip fractures remains high during the COVID-19 pandemic despite the movement control order (MCO) being enforced in Malaysia. With prompt surgical intervention, most of the patients can regain ambulatory status, albeit with a walking aid.

Concepts Keywords
Bipolar bipolar hemiarthroplasty
Chinese geriatric hip fracture
Malaysia hip joint
Surgery trivial fall


Type Source Name
disease MESH COVID-19 Pandemic
disease VO population
disease MESH morbidity
disease IDO intervention
disease VO time
disease MESH complications
disease MESH infection
disease MESH hematoma
disease MESH seroma
drug DRUGBANK L-Threonine

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